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Anomally - Once In Hell (CD)

Once In Hell
by Eirini Papadopoulou at 17 February 2009, 4:23 PM

ANOMALLY is a Death/Goth/Core Metal  act from Azores Islands created in 2005. First they produced a self-financed promo CD and then started writing Once In Hell at Watt Studio with Joao Mendes in production, mixing and mastering of the album. As they say in their official website, ANOMALLY has been influenced by bands such as PARADISE LOST, DARK TRANQUILLITY and even LAMB OF GOD. In Once In Hell you will be able to notice traits from the dark character and music making of the aforementioned bands, but without being a cheap copy of them. Before proceeding to reviewing their debut album I must add that ANOMALLY has been entitled as the Best New Band by the regional media and also hold the award of  the Best Rock/Metal Band in the Azores Music Awards in 2007. The band has also appeared in a number of other local festivals.
The debut album of the Azorians, Once In Hell is overall a well-produced and thought out work with lots of  fine touches which take it above the average mass of releases. The groovy Swedish-like Death Metal riffs under the presence of both clean and (digitally enhanced) brutal vocals, with evenly flowing Gothic keyboards make this whole production something worth listening to as the melodies of each song are carried out skillfully and are easily memorable (I could refer to the songs as catchy and I am saying that in a good way).
The first track after the intro is called Between Angels And Demons and enters with a piano prelude which is actually the basic melody and leitmotif to the whole song. Nelson's brutal and sometimes screaming vocals kick in and are surrounded by a dynamic and groovy orchestration with much emphasis on triggered drum beats. In the next track, I Am God, ANOMALLY uses the same pattern with the first track by having a main melodic idea in piano and unfolding it throughout the piece. The third song of the album, No Words From The Dead starts by setting a dark mood with the whispering of a woman and keyboards melodies with a church organ timbre to give way to hardcore riffs and dynamic brutal vocals which intersperse with clean vocals and shouting (the clean vocals in the videoclip of the track are being performed by guitarist Marco Lote). The steady drumming keeps the listener under siege whilst Miguel does a great job with the keyboards as here he cuts the embellishments and holds the basic tones of the melody, creating an epic and atmospheric mood.
Legacy Of Blood kicks in with an audio extract from an action scene with a man talking and then maybe killing a woman, hence the screams and a melodic beatdown to be followed by the standard recipe of ANOMALLY. Once again, the band makes use of hardcore riffs and beatdowns under the light of blackish keyboards. The next track Apocalyptic Signs sets a black and nightmare-ish mood  starting with mid-pace hardcore riffs and brutal,beastly vocals interspersing again with the  guitarist's clean vocals parts. The drumming patterns here go from dynamic double bass to half time and create the groovy sense that all of ANOMALLY's songs have. Immortal and No Hope, the two closing tracks of the album, generally follow the same pattern with the other tracks of the album but also introduce a glockenspiel timbre to the keyboards of Immortal and make a loud exit with No Hope being the roughest and more aggressive than the other tracks of Once In Hell.
Interesting and soulful, Once In Hell is an album whose melodies you will remember even after your first listening. ANOMALLY seems to be a highly creative band and they prove that with their debut album. I really am anxious to see what comes next from them…

3 Star Rating

Spiritual Embrace
Between Angels And Demons
I Am God
No Words From The Dead
Legacy Of Blood
Apocalyptic Signs
No Hope
Nelson Leal - Vocals
Marco Lote - Guitar, Vocals
Tiago Alves - Guitar
Miguel Aguiar - Synths
Zι Pires - Drums
Record Label: Private Release


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